World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Annan receives emotional welcome in East Timor

Press Release

Secretary-General receives emotional welcome in East Timor

17 February -- On his first visit to East Timor after it was racked by post-referendum violence, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today told the people of the troubled territory that the UN was working hard to rebuild their land and bring law and order to it.

"We are here as your partners," Mr. Annan stressed in his remarks to a swelling crowd of 5,000 in Liquica, a town which has been called the "killing field" of East Timor after a wave of murders, rape and destruction by the militia that followed last year's vote for independence.

"Together we can weather the current crisis and usher in a new era for East Timor - an era in which East Timor takes its place in the family of nations, and in which its men, women and children can live in dignity and peace."

Mr. Annan also told the residents of Liquica that UN police and human rights teams were investigating last year's events, and that a judicial system was beginning to take shape to ensure that justice would be handed down in courtrooms, and "not in the streets."

He added that the international community had pledged $500 million towards reconstruction work to restore basic services and rebuild infrastructure.

"That money is now beginning to flow," he said, "meaning that reconstruction will begin in earnest and jobs will be created."

Earlier, the Secretary-General had laid a wreath in memory of those who had died during last April's massacre at a village church. The survivors standing nearby cried and one after another embraced the Secretary-General and his wife. Mr. Annan told the villagers that he found it "particularly shocking" that a house of worship would be desecrated.

Before flying by helicopter to Liquica, Mr. Annan met in Dili with UN Transitional Administrator Sergio Vieira de Mello, independence leader Xanana Gusmão, Nobel Peace Laureate Bishop Carlos Filipe Ximenes Belo, and Bishop Basilio Nascimento.

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>


Mexico: Violence And Repression Of Teachers

The member organizations of Network for Peace express our indignation over the acts of repression that the Mexican State has carried out, through the police forces... In Chiapas, Guerrero and Oaxaca, the conflict has resulted in murders of teachers and civilians as well as hundreds of wounded and dozens of people arrested. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Britain's Pleas For Mercy

So… Boris Johnson is promising that he won't be holding a snap general election, if he's chosen as the next UK Conservative Party leader. Reportedly, he is even making that promise a feature of his leadership campaign, since a vote for Boris would therefore mean (wink wink) that his colleagues wouldn't have to risk their jobs and face the wrath of the British public until 2020. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news